Community College Pros and Cons
Many parents struggle with homeschooling the high school years. One common debate is whether or not a local community college is a good place to send a 16 year old, homeschooling student to finish high school. Here are some of the pros and cons that the families I've worked with are considering.
Pros: It's a free program that offers "dual credit," meaning that the student gets both high school and college credit for their courses. This means that when they graduate high school they could also have nearly completed 2 years of college as well...for free. The community college offers a large selection of courses on subjects the parent might not be able to teach. Cons: The classes are with people of all ages, persuasions, etc. in a college setting. This means that if you are not ready for your child to see pornographic images or hear immoral songs, meet friends of all types including some with gender issues, have professors who don't believe in God and/or who promote a wide range of alternative lifestyles, or debate sensitive issues in class such as abortion, pot legalization, gun control, homosexuality, etc. then this is not the place your child needs to be.
Some kids can handle these things ok but other homeschoolers, who may have always lived in a faith-based home environment, may have a hard time with all the new issues. The kids who handle this college environment best are usually those who are mature for their age and have discussed most of these issues already with their parents and/or youth group. Many parents seem to get caught up in the fact that it is an opportunity for a free college education, while forgetting that they didn't homeschool to begin with to save money. Unfortunately some things that are free can be very costly. I've seen parents lose the hearts of their children to the world in similar situations. However I have also seen these programs benefit some families. One option for parents who are struggling with teaching the higher maths or sciences in high school is to just take one or two classes in these subjects, instead of signing your child up as a full time student.
Pray about what is best for your children and be careful not to use money as the only benchmark. Contact us for help in planning for the high school years. We can help you put together a four year plan in 8th grade. This is the best time to consider and plan ahead for their whole high school transcript so that they can begin thinking about college.